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Factor Graphs and the Sum-Product Algorithm

A tutorial paper that presents a generic message-passing algorithm, the sum-product algorithm, that operates in a factor graph. Following a single, simple computational rule, the sum-product algorithm computes either exactly or approximately various marginal functions derived from the global function. A wide variety of algorithms developed in artificial intelligence, signal processing, and digital communications can be derived as specific instances of the sum-product algorithm, including the forward/backward algorithm, the Viterbi algorithm, the iterative "turbo" decoding algorithm, Pearl's (1988) belief propagation algorithm for Bayesian networks, the Kalman filter, and certain fast Fourier transform (FFT) algorithms

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